Rosemary's Double DelightBy: Heather Rainier
Divine Creek Ranch 4
The middle of July…
The humid air hung in the large workshop as Evan stroked loose dust from the smooth oak surface with his hand. The odors of freshly sawn wood and turpentine permeated the shop as the radio played a Travis Tritt song.
“Why don’t you call Rosemary tonight?” Wes asked as he turned to the work table, wiping down the framework for the padded bench.
Fucking mind reader.
“Naw. She’d probably rather talk to you, Wes. I don’t want to upset her anymore.” Anymore. Shit, now even Travis Tritt was getting in on the fun, poking at the painful spot in his chest.
Wes continued in a reasonable tone. “Not talking this out is what’s upsetting her. She misses you. She wishes things were like they used to be, before…you know.”
Evan turned to look his brother in the eye. “Before I fucked everything up. Yeah, I know.”
“That’s not what I meant. If you call her, she’d be happy to hear from you. It’d be a start anyway.”
“We’ll see,” Evan muttered. The ball was in his court, and he stood there like an idiot watching it bounce away. “She working today?”
“Yeah, she usually takes lunch at eleven thirty,” Wes offered helpfully. “I could spare you for a while if you want to take her to lunch.”
The lyrics of “Anymore” mocked him as the song came to its final refrain. “And I’m tired of pretending I don’t love you anymore.”
“I’ll think about it.” Evan looked at his watch. He’d stop at ten o’clock and take a shower. It would be good to talk to her. He missed the old times something fierce.
* * * *
Rosemary chatted with Jack Warner as she folded the shirts he was purchasing into a neat stack on the sales counter at Cheaver’s Western Store.
“How are things going with you and those Garner boys?” Jack asked as he handed her his debit card.
“All right, I guess. Wes seems fine, but Evan I don’t know about.”
“Be patient, sweetheart. He’ll come around.” Jack smiled at her compassionately. “They’re good men, and they deserve a good woman. Plus, they need someone to keep them on their toes. I imagine you’re up to that challenge?”
“I hope so. You, Grace, Ethan and Adam give me hope. The wedding plans going all right?”
“Oh, yeah. Are you coming with Wes?”
“Yes. I wouldn’t miss it.” She handed him his shopping bag.
“Well, hang in there. We’ll see you around,” Jack said with a wink before strolling off to the front door.
A few minutes later, a woman approached the sales counter and laid several items on it then plopped her over-sized, knock-off 10
handbag down beside them. Rosemary heaved a mental groan, remembering where she’d last seen this oh-so-annoying person.
Several weeks ago at O’Reilley’s, the woman had nosily approached Rosemary’s friend Grace while she was enjoying dinner with Jack, Adam Davis, and Angel Martinez and had the nerve to question her about the intricate gold necklace she was wearing. The necklace had been a gift from Ethan Grant, and the woman had made some ugly insinuations about Grace accepting such a costly gift from another man when she was engaged to Jack. Rosemary braced herself for whatever venom would spew from the woman’s mouth this time.
Elizabeth Owens sighed dramatically and spoke to Rosemary as if she knew her well. “It is such a shame that decent, hard-working men around here have the wool pulled over their eyes like that.”
Smothering a sigh, Rosemary replied, “I’m sorry?”
Remember it’s your mouth that gets you in so much trouble. She’s not worth it.
“That poor man, Jack Warner. That gold digger he’s engaged to is one of those women in town. You know, the ones who like group sex?” Elizabeth uttered the last two words in a stage whisper meant to be heard. “She’s bamboozled him into marrying her. She’s stolen three of the most eligible bachelors this town has. Someone ought to run her out of town. We don’t need that kind of immorality around here. The bible clearly states that—”